With spring spreading like a bag of spilled gravy, now is the ideal time to throw open the windows and get home-care projects underway. Pick up a Stanley six-piece screwdriver set for $6.99, a VPT rip hammer for $8.49, and a whole bunch of screws, anchors, and bolts (prices vary), and you'll be ready to finally mount every buffalo nickel and steel penny in your coin collection. Illuminate the newfound décor with a 12-pack of Ace light bulbs ($21.48), the better to see by as you make use of a Purdy four-piece premium paint-tray kit ($19.99). If you need to match paint to a favorite coverlet or choose a hue that complements a pleather recliner, each store offers a paint-matching service free of charge. Get keys made for $1.99 a pop, or clean a barnacle-encrusted carpet with the help of a carpet-cleaning machine ($30 a day to rent).
Nasturtium Art of Living harnesses and concentrates the artistic spirit of its surroundings, granting visitors the chance to carry away pieces of its vibrant soul. The store's exterior is slathered in hand-painted eponymous flora, which pops vibrantly across a lawn that's often populated with busy, buzzing artists. Walk inside, and start a path toward bedecking blank walls with a gold-leaf Buddha painting on natural wood ($48). In the housewares section, selections include a frosted zipper wine glass ($40) intended to playfully confuse guests with its suggestion that liquids share the same properties as pants. Clever sink strainers ($16.50) capture errant detritus, which falls precariously from vibrant pansy plates ($15–$21) available in an eye-watering array of colors. Perusing guests can also opt to splash crafted verdure into gardens, kitchens, and closet shrines with delicate topiaries ($20–$60), or embellish bright bodies with earrings ($15–$65) and bracelets ($45–$110).
Since 1972, the farmers at Santa's Tree Farm and Village have grown one crop: evergreen trees. Today, they cultivate six species?douglas fir, grand fir, white fir, noble fir, redwood, and monterey pine?on 22 rolling fields spread across 487 acres. They equip visitors with saws, and either send them out to cut their own Christmas trees or come along to train local bears to do it instead. The farm's operators also cultivate holiday cheer?a gift shop stocks handmade wreaths, tree stands, and other decorations ranging from mistletoe to garlands and twinkling baubles. In a central square, performers organize weekend activities such as puppet shows and visits from Santa Claus. A trackless train ferries visitors on tours of the farm as they savor complimentary hot apple cider.
Formerly known as Colquhoun Glass Works, the seeds of Half Moon Bay Art Glass were sown in 1977 when artist Douglass Colquhoun Brown stepped off a tall ship in the English Channel. Discovering the art of etched glass in France, Brown became instantly smitten with the craft, and vowed to learn it upon his return to the states. After honing his skills creating scientific glassware for Silicon Valley, the artist expanded into more decorative objects such as jelly fish lamps, orchids, and seasonal glass pumpkins ideal for the jack-o-lantern-averse. Located on the site of a winery, Half Moon Bay Art Glass teaches glass-blowing classes suitable for first-timers of all ages, 12 and up.